Zika Virus Fumigation Requirements for China
As stated in a recent article, there has been a Zika Virus Advisory for shipments going into China and China is taking preventative measures for shipments coming into its country. A notice has been issued from Leon Skarshinski, Commercial Officer for the U.S. Department of Commerce, Embassy of the United States of America in Beijing, China, who has announced the conclusion of a meeting with the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People’s Republic of China (AQSIQ) and senior staff regarding the mosquito fumigation requirement for U.S. originating cargo.
A lot of information is still unclear, but what has been communicated thus far is that containers originating from countries involved with Zika Virus shall be subject to anti-mosquito treatment.
It is the Chinese Consignee’s Responsibility to inform Shipper (at origin) to provide a certificate of proof of fumigation treatment.
If no certificate is provided, the buyer must fumigate the cargo at arrival at port of destination.
Ocean carriers are not involved in this procedure and all relevant costs shall be taken care of by the cargo interest parties.
What we are finding is that as long as the Consignee agrees, fumigation at the port of destination is significantly less costly than fumigation in the United States. For example, a shipper may incur up to $1000 in fumigation costs depending on how long the fumigation takes, chemical used, chassis fees, where it is done, etc.
It is important to note that fumigation procedures may be handled differently in different Chinese destination ports, therefore, the information is subject to change. We encourage U.S. Shippers to communicate with their Chinese buyers and arrange a plan for fumigation and obtaining a certificate.
In the event a fumigation certificate is not provided by the Chinese consignee, inbound cargo from infected areas will be inspected first and then Quarantine Bureau officials will determine whether fumigation is necessary or not.
Note, there is not a standard fumigation certificate at this time and an official government stamp is not required.
Based on information provided by Hyundai Merchant Marine, the process and cost for fumigation at destination in China is quite simple. “Generally speaking, the terminal will open the container door and spray disinsecting gas or liquid, based on the cargo situation, without cost. If it is determined that fumigation is required, that cost will be paid directly to the terminal or Quarantine Bureau by the consignee. Actual costs are not available at this time, but we have been reported it is $30 per TEU.”
As mentioned before, and according to HMM, the application of the AQSIQ guideline is being applied differently at different ports in China. At this time, we do not have clear information about many of the South China ports. However, we do have the following information to share regarding Northern China ports.
Terminal will open the container door and spray pesticide gas or liquid based on cargo situation without cost. If fumigation is determined to be necessary, then consignee will be responsible for fumigation cost.
Fumigation will occur on every shipment and consignee will be responsible for fumigation cost.
After customs declaration, all containers shipped under one B/L will drayed to inspection area. Containers will be opened and pesticide will be spayed into containers. Consignee will be responsible for fumigation cost.
The procedure is to spray gas without opening container. Container will then be opened to examine cargo after gas dissipates. If fumigation is determined to be necessary, consignee will be responsible for mosquito eradication charges, sweeping charges and fumigation charges. For more information from the release, keep reading.
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FAS Notes for ZIKA Chinese Fumigation Requirement
Released August 18, 2016:
All U.S.-origin vessels that left the United States after August 5 must comply with the new requirements as follows:
- All shipments (air and sea vessels) originating from the United States are required to provide some of proof of fumigation at the Chinese port.
- Disinsection does not require fumigation. Disinsection can be carried out by physical or chemical means. For physical, this could include trapping, air curtains, or other integrated pest management techniques. For chemical, this could include surface spraying, space spraying, or fumigation. It is the shipper’s choice, but should take into account human health and safety.
- The disinsection requirement (and therefore the proof of disinsection) applies to the container or vessel, NOT to the goods being shipped. Therefore, if the entire vessel can provide proof, in the form of a certificate, that the vessel is free of mosquitoes, then no additional inspection needs to be carried out.
- The information to be included on the certificate has already been provided in the notice sent out by AQSIQ.
- Local CIQ inspectors will continue with their selective examination procedures and there will not be a separate Zika-related inspection process. However, if live mosquito eggs, larva, or mosquitoes are found during the inspection, disinsection will be required.
- For shipments that are chilled below 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees Fahrenheit), there is no disinsection certificate required. But, if live mosquito eggs are found by local CIQ inspectors at port, then disinsection will be required.
- If there has been previous disinsection of the vessel (including fumigation) for other purposes (e.g., phytosanitary workplan), then proof of that treatment is sufficient proof for this Zika requirement.
- Proof of disinsection does not need to be provided by a governmental body, or a government approved body.
- The disinsection treatment can be carried out at any point during the shipping process. For example, if the containers are disinsected before loading and certified as mosquito free, then loaded in a mosquito free environment, then this is sufficient.
- AQSIQ will perform a risk-assessment on the Florida region (including surrounding neighboring states) to determine the risk of Zika. AQSIQ will base its risk-assessment based on documentation of control measures that the CDC has been asked to provide.
- AQSIQ had the right people at the meeting, had prepared thoughtful answers to the questions posed by USG, and responded to additional questions posed by the delegation.
- Overall, this department is quite willing to continue engaging with USDA (and USG overall) in resolving any additional issues or complications that arise. However, they readily admit that China has confirmed the presence of the Aedis Aegiptus mosquito in several southern provinces and therefore, are taking these Zika control measures very seriously.
Expect something more official from all attendees (FAS, FCS, STATE, APHIS, CDC) in the very near future.
Source: NHLA / American Journal of Transportation